Employee Resource Groups Are on the Rise at U.S. Companies

A diverse woman sits in a modern office
“About 35% of companies have added or expanded their support for ERGs since the start of 2020, according to a 2021 study by McKinsey & Co. and LeanIn.org of 423 organizations employing 12 million people.”

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“About 35% of companies have added or expanded their support for ERGs since the start of 2020, according to a 2021 study by McKinsey & Co. and LeanIn.org of 423 organizations employing 12 million people.”

As business leaders have increased focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, ERGs have started to gain more support and recognition. ERGs, or Employee Resource Groups, have been around for a long time. However, they are shifting from solely networking groups to groups given resources and responsibility to drive real change within organizations. ERGs can be leveraged to enhance a company’s DEI efforts, such as through initiating inclusive programs, offering mentorship and support services, and contributing to equitable hiring practices.

For example, “as of June 2020, nearly half of 140 organizations with at least 1,000 employees were taking or planned to seek ERGs’ assistance in drafting racial-inequity action plans, concluded a survey that month by the productivity institute.”

Shifting the purpose of ERGs at your company takes time and resources. It can be easy to get lost in the ERG terrain. Check out our fifth Tuesday’s Take episode, “Writing a New ERG Playbook,” to see how we can help you leverage ERGs in a cross-functional DEI strategy. This webinar gives you a taste of the larger conversations we’re having at ideascape– reach out to Jonathan Dyke and Deon Gaines to learn more.

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